In matters of fitness and health, I find it difficult to walk on the path that Jesus wants for me. Sometimes I feel like I’m walking a tightrope between two bodies of water; if I fall to the left, I land in the lake of gluttony and sloth, with my focus on food/momentary pleasure rather than on Christ. If I fall to the right, I’m in the lake of obsessing over calories and stressing out if I miss a workout, and I end up idolizing my body/self instead of keeping my heart centered on Christ. The problem with both of these scenarios is that they are dangerously self-centered. A while back a friend told me, “I finally feel like I’m at a good place where I don’t think about food, and exercise is just a part of my routine. I’m happy with my weight and my body, and I feel good.” I felt a momentary pang of something, perhaps jealousy, not because she hasn’t worked hard to get to that point physically and spiritually. I felt it because I so badly want to find that balance, but just can’t seem to grasp it. So I turned to scripture for encouragement, and of course the Word of God had a couple of things to tell me.
Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies. (1 Corinthians 6:19-20)
Therefore I urge you, brothers and sisters, in the view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God- this is your true and proper worship. (Romans 12:1)
Scripture tells us that every thing we do is to be is an offering of worship to God. For me, this means diaper changes, toddler discipline, meal prep and clean up, diet and exercise…all of this is intended to be done in a manner pleasing to God, as a form of worship. My food choices and physical activity should honor Him. Instead of viewing meal time as a test of my will, or exercise as a dreaded task to check off my to-do list, I can approach it as an opportunity to worship. This is interesting to me, the idea that worship is not confined to singing during Sunday morning church. And with this new perspective, I head into the week with these scriptures as my focus, and take one step closer to finding the balance I seek.
How do you maintain balance when it comes to taking care of your body? Leave a comment!